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Scopes on Double Rifles

This is a discussion on Scopes on Double Rifles within the Double Rifles forums, part of the HUNTING EQUIPMENT, FIREARMS & AMMUNITION category; Ive wanted a DR for as long as I can remember. I read everything I could find on them. Back ...

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    Default Scopes on Double Rifles

    Ive wanted a DR for as long as I can remember. I read everything I could find on them. Back "THEN" a DR was likely as not to have hammers and with a Big Bore shooting cigar sized cartridges at Big and Nasty animals, which were just as likely to be charging the shooter as they were running away. Also back "THEN", rifle scopes were kinda fragile, or if not fragile, were certainly meant for long shots.

    Now its not the same --OR-- Ive found more recent stuff to read....BUT Im seeing talk about optics on Double Rifles and even Dangerous Game Doubles. Scopes have gotten stronger,and smaller, and they dont necessarily even have to magnify. So Im just wondering what the current feeling is on scoping a Double Rifle or even a Dangerous Game Double???

    Is the caliber the deciding factor? What about small RDS sights?

    Thoughts......

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    I think ones vision is the deciding factor - then caliber. I have a Sodia .375 with claw mounts wearing the little Leupold VX III. It throws a 2.5 inch LR LR at a hundred meters and the right barrel is a MOA shooter for a three shot group. I use a 300 gr TSX load worked up by Superior. I would have no hesitation taking a 200 meter shot at plains game with it. The scope pops off instantly and it has the usual express sight set up with a very large white bead which my eyes can center. I have no problem with a scope on this rifle in this caliber. It is accurate enough to be a general purpose weapon. On anything heavier, I would be inclined not to use optics unless my vision made it essential.
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    When I get my 9.3x74R it will be regulated with open sights but also have claw or Swing off mounts with a steel tubed Schmidt & Bender 4# scope added.

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    Depending on what mounts your double rifle will accept i believe Ray A. recommended the Leopold 2.5 fixed scope with detachable mounts.

    Red Legs and Classicsafari have offered good advise also....
    James Grage - New Mexico
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    Quote Originally Posted by classicsafari View Post
    When I get my 9.3x74R it will be regulated with open sights but also have claw or Swing off mounts with a steel tubed Schmidt & Bender 4# scope added.
    JJ Perodeau at Champlin Arms is one of the very few people in this country who can create a set of claw mounts for a double rifle. He is also a genius at building rings to fit existing claw bases and will reregulate a double. None of this is real cheap, but my experience with SxS's, gun or rifle, is that one gets what one pays for. J.J. PERODEAU
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    ?????..LONG POST ! disregard if too long, or not intrested!

    Quote Originally Posted by Red Leg View Post
    I think ones vision is the deciding factor - then caliber. I have a Sodia .375 with claw mounts wearing the little Leupold VX III. It throws a 2.5 inch LR LR at a hundred meters and the right barrel is a MOA shooter for a three shot group. I use a 300 gr TSX load worked up by Superior. I would have no hesitation taking a 200 meter shot at plains game with it. The scope pops off instantly and it has the usual express sight set up with a very large white bead which my eyes can center. I have no problem with a scope on this rifle in this caliber. It is accurate enough to be a general purpose weapon. On anything heavier, I would be inclined not to use optics unless my vision made it essential.
    Red Leg your choice of scopes was well thought out, or at least a happy accident! Many think it is stupid to mount glass on a double rifle, but it is far from stupid, as long as it is done properly. Double rifle makers have been offering auxiliary scope sights on their double rifle as long as scope sights have been available. The problem with the public痴 hesitation to mount scopes on double rifles is because most do not understand double rifles or scopes very well! As I致e stated many times on the various double rifle forums over the years, most people think a double rifle is not accurate passed the muzzle of the rifle! Nothing could be farther from the truth!

    Quote Originally Posted by classicsafari View Post
    When I get my 9.3x74R it will be regulated with open sights but also have claw or Swing off mounts with a steel tubed Schmidt & Bender 4# scope added.
    First off the scope is simply a better sight because it places the target and the cross hair on a single plain! Contrary to popular belief the human eye can only focus on one distance at a time. The iron sights ask the eye to focus on three distances at the same time, the rear sight, the front sight, and the target! This is impossible, though most who shoot open sights think they are doing just that! The fact is they are focusing on the rear sight only, and the rest are a blur! It works but is not as precise as is the placing a CLEAR crosshair of a CLEAR target! This has nothing to do with distance of the shot, but is simply a better designed sighting system!

    On a double rifle the scope sight is normally the secondary, or specialized sight, while the irons are primary! The exact opposite of the scope on a bolt type hunting rifle! Both should be fitted with both types of sights! But the scopes on both should be mounted with quality quick-detach scope mounts so the scope can be removed, and replaced with absolute return to zero every time! With the doubles mentioned in the quotes above, either of those rifles could be used with the scope for almost all purposes, because they are both medium chamberings not big bore! Both are very good cartridges, and are very versatile hunting cartridges that will do things well far above their size, yet are very well suited to things like deer and plains game as well. These are two chamberings in double rifle that are most often seen wearing scope sights!

    On the .400 cal and up scopes have a place as well, but are far less likely to automatically come with facility for scope mounting unless ordered that way or modified later! Still even 470 NE doubles can benefit from scope sights if properly selected and mounted for the purpose the rifle is to be used! The selection of scopes is far easier for a bolt rifle than for a double rifle. The bolt rifle can work properly with a very heavy scope, and/or mounted as high as it needs to be to make the objective bell clear the top of the barrel! This, however is not the case with a double rifle for a couple of reasons!

    Mounting a scope on a double rifle requires some educated thought, and a complete understanding of what makes a double rifle regulate! The double rifle depends on the barrel time, and muzzle flip to regulate properly. Anything that is added to the double rifle that changes this barrel time and muzzle flip will destroy regulation.

    A scope mounted on a double rifle needs first to be as light as it can be, and still stand up to the recoil of the rifle, and the larger the chambering to more recoil you get!

    This is because when a side-by-side double rifle is fired the sights are ON the aiming point, but the line of sight through the bore of the barrels is not! The BARREL TIME is the time the bullet is traveling down the bore to the muzzle, and is combined with the amount of flip in the barrel to position it to be pointing at the place where the sights were pointing when the trigger was pulled! Example: when the sights are aligned on the point of aim, the RIGHT barrel is pointing at a place on the target that is LOW, and on the LEFT of where the sights are looking, but by the time the bullet exits the muzzle it too is pointed at the point of aim. Which ever barrel is fired, that barrel will rise, and move away from the other barrel, so, anything that retards that movement will not allow the correct amount of flip to regulate! The higher the scope has to me mounted, and/or the heavier the scope the more it will effect the regulation. This is the reason small straight-tubed scopes are most often seen on double rifle, so they can be mounted as low as is possible and are usually aluminum to save weight to avoid retarding the flip! All this is the reason people who know double rifles never use a regular gunsmith to have a scope mounted on a double rifle, because most gunsmiths do not understand double rifle either.

    Mounted properly a scope on a double rifle is a real benefit especially if illuminated, and low power! On a dangerous game double rifle the 1 power is perfect because it can be used up close with both eyes open, for things like elephant or charging cape buffalo where pin point bullet placement is a must to hit the brain, because nothing else will stop him when he is that close! Normally one removes the scope when going into the weeds with a wounded animal, but sometimes you don稚 have a choice because you may run into the animal before you expect to, and have to shoot with the scope attached. The power of a scope doesn稚 make long shots any easier, it only magnifies the target the hold over or under is the shooter痴 job. A perfect scope for a double rifle is the 1-4X28 Trijicon scope that uses no batteries but is illuminated by a combination of sun lighted fiber-optics in day light, and continued by Tritium in night or failing light! This scope is light, and with a small objective lens so it can be mounted as low as possible!
    ...............................................
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    Iエm planning to get myself a new double, new or secondhand.

    Calibers will be one of the following: .475 No2, .470, .450 3 1/4", or a .450/.400 3"

    I think the last one would be my best choice. I used to have a Merkel .470, but it had a too low comb, and really belted me.. With a better stock-fit, it would probably be "ok" to shoot with, still heavy though.

    However, Iエd very much like to have the DR scoped with a european 1,5-6x42 in a german pivot mount.

    Reading the article from Dugaboy, this seems like a really bad idea..?

    Iエd like it to be regulated without the scope, then find a handload that works ok with both.

    I?エd like to bring the double for an elephant hunt or two (or three or... Iエm 33 so hopefully have a few years of hunting ahead of me), then perhaps some antelopes, like Bongo, bushbuck, perhaps a Kudu. Nyala is a very nice antelope, however so expensive, that I?エd rather do a tuskless or a PAC hunt.

    Bear in mind that I also hunt with the following guns:

    A doublerifledrilling, 2x9,3x74R/20-76mm, scoped with a Varipoint 1,1-4x24
    (I thought of parting with this one in the event of a scoped .450/400, a keeper it in the case of a unscoped heavier gun)
    A M-98 9,3x62 scoped with a 1,5-6x42

    As you see I have medium calibers already, but would like a proper B5 double rifle.

    The buys available at the moment are these:

    Secondhand: Karl Hauptmann .475 no.2 (no scope bases)
    Secondhand: .470 NE (no scope bases)
    NEW: Verney - Carron .450/.400 or .450 3 1/4"

    A good battery for africa might be that M98 + a heavy unscoped DR? Seems like the smartest choice, but the DR will see little hunting in Scandinavia without that scope..

    Appreciate your views and what to do?

    If I only thought of doing one elephant hunt, the doublerifledrilling might do the job? The barrels are very thin, so I?エm reluctant to shoot modern Solids in it, perhaps I?エd dare the Woodleigh Solids..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bonde View Post
    Iエm planning to get myself a new double, new or secondhand.

    Calibers will be one of the following: .475 No2, .470, .450 3 1/4", or a .450/.400 3"

    I think the last one would be my best choice. I used to have a Merkel .470, but it had a too low comb, and really belted me.. With a better stock-fit, it would probably be "ok" to shoot with, still heavy though.

    However, Iエd very much like to have the DR scoped with a european 1,5-6x42 in a german pivot mount.

    Reading the article from Dugaboy, this seems like a really bad idea..?

    Iエd like it to be regulated without the scope, then find a handload that works ok with both.

    I?エd like to bring the double for an elephant hunt or two (or three or... Iエm 33 so hopefully have a few years of hunting ahead of me), then perhaps some antelopes, like Bongo, bushbuck, perhaps a Kudu. Nyala is a very nice antelope, however so expensive, that I?エd rather do a tuskless or a PAC hunt.

    Bear in mind that I also hunt with the following guns:

    A doublerifledrilling, 2x9,3x74R/20-76mm, scoped with a Varipoint 1,1-4x24
    (I thought of parting with this one in the event of a scoped .450/400, a keeper it in the case of a unscoped heavier gun)
    A M-98 9,3x62 scoped with a 1,5-6x42

    As you see I have medium calibers already, but would like a proper B5 double rifle.

    The buys available at the moment are these:

    Secondhand: Karl Hauptmann .475 no.2 (no scope bases)
    Secondhand: .470 NE (no scope bases)
    NEW: Verney - Carron .450/.400 or .450 3 1/4"

    A good battery for africa might be that M98 + a heavy unscoped DR? Seems like the smartest choice, but the DR will see little hunting in Scandinavia without that scope..

    Appreciate your views and what to do?

    If I only thought of doing one elephant hunt, the doublerifledrilling might do the job? The barrels are very thin, so I?エm reluctant to shoot modern Solids in it, perhaps I?エd dare the Woodleigh Solids..
    if you are wanting to use the double in europe as well go for the new verney carron in 450/400.the merkels are nice but as you say they have too much drop on the stock for me as well. go for the verney carron and get fitted for it even if you have to pay the factory a visit. guillaume verney-carron took my measurements at sci in vegas this year just in case i need another double with the 450/400 you can use it on moose and boar( i have used my .416 rigby on driven boar for the fun of it). my 9.3x74r double has a scope with claw mounts and is very accurate, but it is regulated very well. i dont use the scope as i like to use irons on doubles, but as red leg says vision plays a part as well. i have used my 9.3 double on driven boar and 1 red stag in hungary, and the longest shot on boar and the shot on the stag were approx 130 metres using the irons so for scandinavia you shouldnt have a problem using the iron sights. its more fun as well i think. the 9.3x62 and the 450/400 would make a fine combination for africa.

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    The scope in mind weigh 440grams, i e just shy of 1lb.

    The preferred mount is a german Era mount - solid and among the lover ones.

    Would you gentlemen think the added weight would be "ok" on a .450/.400? What about a straight .450?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bonde View Post
    The scope in mind weigh 440grams, i e just shy of 1lb.

    The preferred mount is a german Era mount - solid and among the lover ones.

    Would you gentlemen think the added weight would be "ok" on a .450/.400? What about a straight .450?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bonde View Post
    The scope in mind weigh 440grams, i e just shy of 1lb.

    The preferred mount is a german Era mount - solid and among the lover ones.

    Would you gentlemen think the added weight would be "ok" on a .450/.400? What about a straight .450?
    the best thing is to contact verney-carron and ask what weight they could build you a 450/400 to, or a .450 if you are interested in that calibre. i wouldnt have thought they would get a .450 down much below 10 1/2 lbs so with a scope your up to 11 1/2 lbs plus which for me is more than i want to lug around in the bush. is there any reason you seem to really want a scope on a bigger calibre double, as they are really designed for short range fast shooting. i wouldnt have a scope on a bigger calibre double as i dont think they look right(if for eyesight reasons you have trouble with irons then maybe a small reflex dot sight) and most doubles in the .450/.470 range are pushing 11 lbs anyway so by adding a scope you are getting up into .500 to .577 rifle weights. as you said you also want to use it for hunting in scandanavia the .450/400 is the most appropriate, and its good enough for anything in africa. it is a bit more general purpose than the calibres above it apart from maybe the 500/416, but i dont know much about that calibre.

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    Sorry, I was refering to the regulation - if a scope of nearly a pund stuff it up, or if it would still be ok?

    I thought of carrying the scope in a holster in the belt, putting it on if a long shot is needed.

    Perhaps I should do some practice with my .22 and decide wether I REALLY need a scope to hit want I want below 60m...

    But, a scope is arguable better for low light conditions - in which we do hunt a lot up here. I suppose you do attempt shots at last light in Africa too?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bonde View Post
    Sorry, I was refering to the regulation - if a scope of nearly a pund stuff it up, or if it would still be ok?

    I thought of carrying the scope in a holster in the belt, putting it on if a long shot is needed.

    Perhaps I should do some practice with my .22 and decide wether I REALLY need a scope to hit want I want below 60m...

    But, a scope is arguable better for low light conditions - in which we do hunt a lot up here. I suppose you do attempt shots at last light in Africa too?
    my 9.3 double shoots fine with the scope on. it is going to depend on the regulation, if the rifle at a certain distance, maybe 50 to 60 yards puts both bullets in the same hole it is on the point of crossing over. mine shoots at 50 yards with the bullets hitting the target as if they had just come out of the barrel so arent going to cross, so i would be able to use the scope for both barrels out to a distance. with the other example you would have to zero it to one barrel and only use it with that specific barrel. if you have a double built by verney-carron they will be able to make it with the scope mounts and fit the scope, so they will be able to make sure it shoots with both irons and scope. has your 9.3x62 got iron sights to also practice with? i would say that with dangerous game you dont attempt to shoot them at last light as it makes it too dangerous/difficult to follow up. the exception are the cats which might not come to the bait until its getting late, its usually the law in certain countries you can shoot up to 30 mins before/after sunset, or on private land you can use a spotlight. so for the low level light situations you are really covered with your scoped 9.3x62.

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    Thanks spike.t, I reckon Iエll be fine then. The scope will be for those situations I need the scope. I want the option so to say. Will probably use the irons. If I need the scope, it will either be getting dark, og a longer shot, in any case I have time to put it on.

    I have iron sights at the 9,3mm, but theyエre not very practical. Would like to get them replaced with bead and shallow V. That would make it a nice rifle to practice with!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bonde View Post
    Thanks spike.t, I reckon Iエll be fine then. The scope will be for those situations I need the scope. I want the option so to say. Will probably use the irons. If I need the scope, it will either be getting dark, og a longer shot, in any case I have time to put it on.

    I have iron sights at the 9,3mm, but theyエre not very practical. Would like to get them replaced with bead and shallow V. That would make it a nice rifle to practice with!
    shouldnt be difficult to sort out, and better to get those sights sorted now and get practicing than leave it as one of those "to do things"

    p.s. if you arent used to using iron sights buy an air rifle and shoot pine cones, flowers , anything just to put hundreds of pellets through it practicing with the sights.

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    I should have one within a short period of time, I have looked at these rifles for a very long time, I just cant catch the scope on a double bug. But to each his own, and things change. As written in Terry Wieland book, "The Prince of Wales Later King Edward VII described a Hammerless gun as a "spaniel without ears"". So tastes change.

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    Iron sights are fine and dandy for closer shooting or until your eyes start getting worse. A.G.E tends to like glass for seeing clearly.
    I don't think I'd toss a scope on a 500NE but it does work fine on the 450NE-470NE and smaller.

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